Simon and Laura



Plot summary

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Top cast

Jill Ireland Photo
Jill Ireland as Burton's Receptionist
Charles Hawtrey Photo
Charles Hawtrey as Railway Porter
Kay Kendall Photo
Kay Kendall as Laura Foster
Peter Finch Photo
Peter Finch as Simon Foster
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
834.68 MB
English 2.0
24 fps
1 hr 30 min
P/S 9 / 29
1.51 GB
English 2.0
24 fps
1 hr 30 min
P/S 12 / 38

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by ianlouisiana9 / 10

A very funny but rather wicked look at a marriage "as seen on tv"........ a sadly - neglected writer.Rarely seen on TV because it would be like Turkeys voting for Christmas.Husband and wife acting pair take TV's 30 pieces of silver with results that 60 years on seem absolutely predictable but at the time were perhaps not so obvious. Back in 1957 tv families were supposed to be perfect,smiling happily married middle class well educated and articulate. Few of these criteria have survived the century so there is an extra degree of humour to be extracted from Simon and Laura who seem almost Victorian even in their animus toward one another which of course must not be reflected by their tv personae. Miss K.Kendall was very much a darling of 50s British movies and a fine light comic performer. Mr P Finch was on his way up to Oscar winning capacity. They spark off each other nicely and many of our favourite character actors fill roles that,whilst not exactly challenging them remind us why we loved them. TV was a relatively uncharted medium at that time and the BBC had the monopoly,it was Hobson's Choice for viewers and enormous audiences in relation to the number of tv sets owned by the public. In today's gossip magazines people like Eammon and Ruth,and Richard and Judy fill the columns as the Simon and Laura of the 21st century. Not that I am suggesting for a minute that their personal lives are anything other than what they appear to be. I became acquainted with Mr Melville after seeing him perform in the play "The Gazebo" at the Theatre Royal",Brighton. He was charming and witty,a strange amalgam of the extrovert and introvert. He has a wide circle of friends in and out of showbusiness although seldom the twain met if he could help it. He may be scarcely remembered now but in his time he was a popular tv stalwart and well - positioned to observe and articulate its mores. "Simon and Laura" scathing though it can be,is also an affectionate portrait of an era that the media have long left behind.And not in a good way.

Reviewed by sep105110 / 10

Absolutely Delightful British Comedy

It absolutely astounds me that a film this fine is not more readily available to North American viewers.

A television producer (Ian Carmichael) in the early days of BBC Television sells the idea of a daily soap opera starring a "real life" show business couple. Unfortunately Laurence Olivier and Vivian Leigh are not available! However there is a suitable substitute in the Fosters (Peter Finch and Kay Kendall). What the producer doesn't know but which their agent (Hubert Gregg) does is that the Fosters are constantly at each others throat (and going home to mother!) and, of course, unemployed and broke. Reluctantly they set aside their fighting and accept the roles for the sake of solvency. To make the Fosters more comfortable in television their real life butler and maid (Maurice Denham and Thora Hird) are cast as their TV series butler and maid. Also along is the series writer (Muriel Pavlow) who has a crush on the producer. The series is a smash but its difficult playing lovey-dovey in front of the camera while fighting behind it. Naturally Carmichael is much more "understanding" of Kendall, than her husband is, and Pavlow is much more "admiring" of Finch, than his wife is. Complications ensue, not only from the couplings but from child actors as well. Eventually it becomes impossible to hide the off screen lives and they begin to cross over into live TV.

This "behind the scenes" movie plays off of the ego and self absorbation prevalent in show business. Finch is outstanding as an actor whose ego constantly needs constant nourishment. Kendall is outstanding as the jealous wife who must be the center of attention. Both characters are played large and the undercurrent of competition, relevant to today's dual career couples, is intense. Carmichael and Pavlow are more subdued "normal" people and subject only to the normal boy-girl misunderstandings. Denham and Hird steal every scene they can as the success of the show begins to effect their egos.

Technical credits, including color photography, are fine.

In all, an absolutely delightful movie. I saw this film once as a child and remembered the vivid characters ever since. It has taken me forty years before I could lay my hands on a copy. Never has a wait been as rewarded as it was with this film.

Reviewed by richard-6518 / 10

Film reflects on the new pretender

Released as TV in the UK began to challenge cinema, Simon and Laura happily confronts the issue involved in the new medium and the celebrity involved. The idea of pretentious actors trapped in a soap opera character is amusingly investigated. Great slice of Brit comedy, directed by the wonderful Muriel Box. The sort of unassuming film that makes you smile. Its cynicism is countered by a playful innocence in its construction. Top stuff Peter Finch, Kay Kendall and Ian Carmichael are warm and funny characters As always with Brit films from this time riddled with class Colour is great too. A real effort to show how superior cinema was to the new medium?

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